IWP student Peter Tase has contributed to several editions of the Washington Report on the Hemisphere, a publication of the Council on Hemispheric Affairs. Most recently, the October 31, edition included a brief blurb on Paraguay by Peter.
Country Briefs: Paraguay
The Pentagon is known to believe that the Ejército del Pueblo Paraguayo (EPP), presents a growing threat to Paraguayan security, especially in the northwestern department of Concepción.
Founded in March 2008, the EPP is a self-proclaimed Marxist group whose violent actions aim to drive out the political oligarchy currently ruling in Paraguay. Prompted by an attack against a police post that resulted in the deaths of two officers, the Paraguayan special security forces on high alert have recently begun offensive actions to confront and fight the EPP in the city of Horqueta.
With a group of around one hundred fifty elite guards from Paraguay‘s National Police headquarters, forces have been stationed in various parts of the region. Furthermore, the armed forces are currently aiding the police with intelligence and logistical support. According to Vice President Federico Franco, the government "will give only war to the EPP" until the insurgency group is eradicated. Horacio Galeano Perrone, the director general of the National Defense Postgraduate School, vowed that the military forces would continue to collaborate with police in the area, even though a state of emergency in Concepción had not been declared. Perrone stated, "What I can assure you is that the operations are more accurate than ever. Intelligence is work-ing around the clock and embodies a high spirit of patriotism."
A proposal to declare a state of emergency in the department of Concepción has been reviewed by the lower chamber of Paraguayan Congress. President Fernando Lugo approved it October 10, 2011, stating, "this is a government that does not close the eyes and ears to the real problems of the country."
This analysis was prepared by COHA Research Fellow Peter Tase
-From the Washington Report on the Hemisphere, 31 October 2011, Vol. 31, No. 19